West Kentucky Rural Electric Cooperative offers tips to save energy

Jan. 7, 2019 -- West Kentucky Rural Electric Cooperative is encouraging our members to be aware of their energy use and take steps to help manage winter electric bills, which may be higher than normal as a result of increased usage.

Weather, especially cold weather, affects residential energy bills more than any other factor. Heating claims about a 42 percent share of overall energy use in U.S. homes. The temperature difference between the inside of your home and the air temperature outside is greater during the winter than in the summer.

Put simply, the greater the temperature difference, the harder your heating system has to work to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature.

energy thermometer

For example, if you want your house to be 70 degrees inside and it’s 20 degrees outside, your HVAC system has to make up 50 degrees difference in temperature. Even on a 100-degree summer day, the HVAC system only has to make up about 30 degrees difference versus that 50-degree variance in winter.

“We are committed to improving the quality of life in Western Kentucky,” said David Smart, president and CEO of the West Kentucky RECC. “At this time of year, it means both helping members stay warm and helping them manage their energy use.”

8 Quick Tips to Avoid High Winter Bills

Winter heating bills impact wallets across the region. Here are some suggested ways to cut back on energy usage and keep your bills as low as possible:

  1. Find and seal all air leaks. Check for cracks near doors and windows, gaps around pipes and chimneys, and any unfinished areas. Plug leaks with weather-stripping, caulk, or expandable foam.
  2. Set your thermostat to 68 degrees, or install a programmable thermostat.
  3. Close blinds and curtains at night; if sunny, open them during the day.
  4. Cover drafty windows yourself with easy, effective, and inexpensive shrink-to-fit plastic.
  5. Turn off lights when not in use. Replace incandescent light bulbs with LEDs, which use at least 75 percent less energy.
  6. Lower your water heater temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
  7. Wash clothes in cold water, and use cold-water detergent whenever possible.
  8. Keep your garage door closed for a warmer garage in winter, and cooler garage in summer.

To find more ways to save, go to www.TogetherWeSave.com.

Call WKRECC if you have questions.